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Today's Belize News: August 6, 2020

Posted By: Marty

Today's Belize News: August 6, 2020 - 08/06/20 12:31 PM


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Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, Reef TV, KREM, and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, Belize Now, Talk Ah Di Town, and other specials.


The San Pedro Sun

Opening of PGIA and schools postponed; increase in COVID-19 cases could lead to quarantine of Ambergris Caye and Orange Walk
The Philip Goldson International Airport (PGIA) will no longer re-open on August 15th as previously scheduled. Prime Minister Right Honourable Dean Barrow made this announcement on Wednesday, August 5th during a virtual press conference. Additionally, islanders were informed that there could be 14 potential positive cases of COVID-19 in San Pedro Town, whose confirmation will be made by Thursday, August 6th the latest. Director of Health Services Dr. Marvin Manzanero said that the initial processing of around 50-55 samples from the island was signalling about 14 confirmed cases of the disease.

Reopening of the PGIA and Schools Delayed
Today at a press conference held in Belize City, it was announced that due to a spike in the number of COVID-19 cases in three districts, there will be a delay in the reopening of the Philip Goldson International Airport (PGIA). Prime Minister Rt. Dean Barrow said that although the airport will not reopen, the weekly repatriation flights for Belizean nationals abroad will continue, including the 14-day mandatory quarantine upon arrival. Additionally, the Minister of Education Hon. Patrick Faber announced that the reopening the schools will also be delayed.

Vildo Westby convicted for the 2017 murder of Felix Ayuso
The island community is relieved with the news that justice has prevailed after Vildo Lorenzo Westby was convicted on Wednesday, August 5th for the brutal murder of San Pedro’s beloved Felix Ayuso. Westby had initially fled to Mexico after Ayuso’s lifeless body was discovered on February 4, 2017. A few months after, Westby was detained by Mexican authorities and after a while, deported to Belize. He has since been at the Belize Central Prison. While details are not forthcoming, The San Pedro Sun understands that the trial was held at the Supreme Court in Belize City without a jury. Westby was informed of the crime and convicted for murder. Further information states that he will be sentenced in September of this year.

Ambergris Today

Thirteen of Fourteen New COVID-19 Cases are from San Pedro
The Office of the Director of Health Services in Belize has just released new numbers in the COVID-19 cases in the country. They have identified a further 14 cases today, this is the second highest number of cases after yesterday's record of 15. Thirteen of those cases are in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye.

BNTU Advises Teachers and Students to Remain Out of the Classroom
Today the BNTU sent out the following press release, advising teachers to remain out the classroom due to the rise in COVID-19 cases in the country. The date set for the reopening of schools on Monday August 10, 2020.

Various Belizean Sources

mzz

Caye Caulker Soup Kitchen day Location
Thursday, August 6th Meal Pick ups: Location: Hibisca. Times: Village: 11:00am - 11:45am. Bahia: 11:45am - 12:30pm.

BNTU Advises Teachers and Students to Remain Out of the Classroom
The Ministry of Education, on June 8th, 2020, announced its intent to reopen schools on Monday, August 10th, 2020, and has since been on a continuous media campaign to that effect. The Belize National Teachers' Union (BNTU) has been closely monitoring the COVID 19 situation in our country and today has concluded that we must discourage our teachers from returning to school and also parents from sending their children back to their classrooms on Monday.

Protocols for parents interested in home schooling
The Ministry of Education has released protocols for parents interested in home schooling their children this upcoming school year. Home Schooling Application Forms are electronically available via MOE's website at www.moe.gov.bz

Home Schooling Agreement

Updated COVID-19 hotline numbers
Kindly take note of the updated COVID-19 hotline numbers at the district level. Persons can still call the 0-800-MOH-CARE toll free number for any and all COVID-19 health-related information.

COVID-19 UPDATE from Office of Director of Health Services
Fifty-one (51) samples were processed today for SARS-CoV2. We have identified a further 14 cases today, this is the second highest number of cases after yesterday's record of 15. The breakdown is as follows: - 10 of the cases are related to the case identified on Sunday in San Pedro (some close contacts are still pending to be processed) - 1 case (in Belmopan) who was contact to the patient hospitalized at the Northern Regional Hospital

The Belize National Designated Authority Launches Studies on National Activities on Engagement with the Green Climate Fund
Since 2015, Belize has engaged with the Green Climate Fund (GCF) to improve access to international funds and to encourage investment in projects and programmes that will help the country adapt to and mitigate climate change and its impacts. Through GCF readiness support, the National Designated Authority (NDA) is launching three case studies to outline Belize’s past engagement experiences with the GCF and future initiatives that will benefit key stakeholders.

Reopening of the PGIA and Schools Delayed
Today at a press conference held in Belize City, it was announced that due to a spike in the number of COVID-19 cases in three districts, there will be a delay in the reopening of the Philip Goldson International Airport (PGIA). Prime Minister Rt. Dean Barrow said that although the airport will not reopen, the weekly repatriation flights for Belizean nationals abroad will continue, including the 14-day mandatory quarantine upon arrival. Additionally, the Minister of Education Hon. Patrick Faber announced that the reopening the schools will also be delayed.

Contact numbers for the Unemployment Relief Program have been updated
Kindly note that the assistance contact numbers for the Unemployment Relief Program have been updated: If you need further information on the employment relief program, please send an email to [email protected] You can also call or text 613-1474 or 613-1149 Monday to Friday between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Messages can be sent to the email at any time.

BBQ Fundraiser on Caye Caulker for Ms Heni
Ms Heni is an outstanding member of the Caye Caulker Community. She is always willing to help in any way she can. She is an active member for the Caye Caulker Roman Catholic School (CCRCS). She had an unfortunate accident and requires immediate surgery. Please let us support her with these fundraisers so that she can get her surgery. Every little bit helps. Contact Miss Seni Smith if you wish to purchase tickets. Tickets can also be purchased from Nicki Aguilar and Kristel Augilar.

Update on Plans for the Reopening of School
1. Will schools reopen on August 10, 2020 as previously planned? Although the Ministry of Education (MOE) had planned for a national reopening of schools on August 10, 2020, based on the extensive contact tracing currently being conducted by the Ministry of Health, the MOE has decided to delay the reopening of schools until further notice. 2. What are schools expected to do in the meantime? Teachers and principals are required to continue the preparations for the eventual reopening of schools and to develop their learning continuity plans and distance education resources in the event of prolonged school closure.

Corozal Chinese Community Offering Food Pantries
Like so many others, our Chinese community in Corozal has been exceptional during our COVID-19 crisis. Tomorrow, August 6th our Corozal Chinese Community once again will be handing over food pantries to the needy people immediately surrounding rural Corozal Town through its respective Village Chairperson. The reason it is being handed to the respective village Chairperson is to avoid over crowding in one location.

Thunderbolt Schedule Change
We will resume our run at 7am Corozal to San Pedro tomorrow 6th August, returning at 3pm from San Pedro to Corozal

COMMISSIONER OF POLICE VISITS COROZAL POLICE FORMATION TO BOOST MORAL
Commissioner of Police, Chester Williams this afternoon visited the Corozal Town Police Station and spoke to the police officers who were working on their day shift. Drastic, important and recent measures in Corozal have been taken at the Corozal Police Station, such as COVID-19 testings, police officers being quarantined, the police stations and police vehicles are being properly fumigated. COMPOL Williams' visit, was to update the police officers of the present COVID-19 situation in Corozal and to build the moral of his officers at the Corozal Police Station.

ARCHANGEL MEDICAL CENTER CLARIFIES
We are open and operating our regular hours. Rumors that are currently being spread are false. We are very strict with our triage. Face mask and sanitizing is a must before entering the clinic. Neither Dra. Paharsingh or Dr. Riveroll have been placed in quarantine due to any contact with suspected cases. Each patient who comes can only have one companion. Please share and thank you.

Escuela Secundaria Tecnica Mexico Meeting Cancelled
NOTE: Escuela Secundaria Tecnica Mexico (ESTM). Please take note that the parent/teacher meeting for August 6th and 7th has been cancelled until further notice. You will be updated if there is any change.

Telethon raised over $32,000 for the Belize Zoo
The Belize Zoo's "Feed the Animals" Telethon hosted by @colorblindbz was an amazing and novel experience for us, and so successful thanks to our wonderful supporters. There was a first class lineup of hosts and entertainers for 5 hours of programming with fantastic results. We are happy to announce that we exceeded our target of BZ$25,000 and were able to raise BZ$32,700! These funds will go directly into the care, nutrition and enriched quality of life for over 200 animals in the Zoo's care, representing 45 native species of Belizean wildlife. TBZTEC management, staff, and animals thank you for your incredible support! The Belize Zoo

Volunteers from the U.S. Embassy visit St. Margret's School
We want to thank St. Margret's School for allowing volunteers from the U.S. Embassy to take part in back to school preparations last Saturday. What a great opportunity to get to know new friends and neighbors in the Cayo district! The volunteers had a blast helping clean up the classrooms and grounds as well as getting the opportunity to meet some of the children when distributing donated bags and supplies.

Alert from the San Pedro Tourist Guide Association
All of us MUST do our part. It is that simple. Not one person or a small group of people can get it done. It will take the entire community to come together and fight this virus together . Indeed there will be really tough and challenging days ahead, but our ancestors have gotten through tough times in the past and so will we! There is quite a long road ahead for us , but as long as we work together we can rise above all challenges we are facing now and will face ahead! Lets be Responsible Adults and follow the very basic Guidelines of Washing hands frequently, Wearing Mask in Public, Practicing Social Distancing and Keeping away from crowded places. We can and We will Get through this San Pedro!

Channel 7

COVID Cases Spike, School Reopening Pushed Back
Everything can change in a dayand it has! After 15 positive cases for COVID 19 were confirmed last night in Orange Walk, Corozal and San Pedro, government has completely changed its COVID 19 rollout plan. And so, schools will not open next week August 10th, and tourism will not open on August 15th. The announcement was made this evening at a national press conference to discuss the response to the changing COVID numbers:

Airport Opening Pushed Back
Faber added that the opening of schools may be pushed back a few weeks to early September, and the opening may be staggered across regions. That means COVID free areas may open before areas that have active cases. But, the airport? Well that's a whole other matter - and the PM explained today that it can't be opened with all these cases: "The majority of them would have been going to Ambergris Caye, to San Pedro, that is clearly not on any longer and so it seems to me that that alone, knocks in the head any contemplation of trying to press forward with the August 15th re-opening of the PGIA so let me declare absolutely, unequivocally that we will not now reopen the PGIA on August 15th..."

A Spike Of 15 Cases Last Night
And so, all this has been prompted by the national COVID situation which went from green one week ago, to yellow over the weekend, with 9 new cases, to red overnight with 15 new cases. Dr Manzanero discussed them today: "Yesterday out of the 15 cases and I'll break it down by geographic locations; we had one case from San Pedro, 7 cases from Corozal and 7 cases from Orange Walk. The easy ones first: from Corozal we had 5 out of the 7 were from repatriated persons, 3 of those have been from people seeking medical care outside of Belize, 2 were coming in through the routine repatriation process..." "

Possible 14 Cases On San Pedro
And while that is the national picture, the situation is most serious on San Pedro and in the Orange Walk district. The Ministry of health is not calling it community spread, but sporadic cases, or clusters. Here's more about San Pedro: where there could be 14 cases and counting: Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister: "Coming now to Ambergris Caye, well, that is where it seems the bacchanal took place in earnest and that is why I suppose you are talking about preliminarily 14 cases and the tracking and tracing exercises are not yet complete. Now at the moment, apart from the 14 that preliminarily are positive but which the doctors and their team at the central lab will have to confirm."

Fishing Tournament Was Super Spreader Event
And one event on San Pedro that is being closely looked at is the Grand Caribe Fishing Deep sea Classic Tournament that happened on the 18th and 19th of July. This is now being called a super spreader event: Dr. Marvin Manzanero, DHS: "We also think that the person in San Pedro that we identified on Sunday is not the index case. There is an indication that her family members actually fell ill before she became ill, so they probably were the initial index cases if you will or the initial index case and she was the last person in that immediate family to have fallen ill and she was the one we picked up..."

Fishing Tournament Attendees Stay Put And Monitor For Symptoms
So, what should you do if you attended this event, or if someone in your family did. The PM says stay put, and wait to see if symptoms appear: "The possibility of infections of the virus having been transmitted at that event to people from Belize City and from elsewhere in the country is an extremely serious one. You heard what Dr. Manza said - the numbers there are such that you can't realistically do the regular mapping and tracking and tracing exercise, so he will have to put out a call to say to those who were at that event if you begin to see any kind of symptoms the ministry will put out the number that you can call and of course ministry personnel will go to your home to do the testing."

No Mexicans At Fishing Tournament
As far as the Commissioner of Police is concerned there were no Mexican's in attendance. That's the info he got from Commanding officer Chris Noble. He told us how that conversation went earlier today. "You know we have heard all sorts of allegations and the easiest thing to do is to make allegations but when we have allegations that is not substantiated with evidence then there is little we can do. I have heard the allegations myself and I personally contacted the officer in charge of San Pedro, Mr. Noble and I asked him the question and Mr. Noble assured me that there were no Mexicans at the tournament..."

Which Areas Will Be Put On Lockdown?
So with significant cases popping up in Orange Walk, San Pedro and Corozal - will the government institute lockdowns? Or, will it at least lock down San Pedro? Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister: "Together with the minister of health, of course the minister of education, the deputy prime minister and if possible, the rest of the cabinet, if not, because we want to move quickly, the attorney general clearly who is responsible for the drafting, we will meet and try as well to consult with members of the national oversight committee before we present you with the raft of legal measures that will be promulgated to try and deal with the situation but I am saying that it is clear to me already that Corozal does not fall into quite the same category as Orange Walk and Ambergris Caye."

On The Contraband Frontline
Tonight, whether by private jet or by illegal border crossing, a new wave of COVID-19 has hit Belize. And from one day to the next, the re-openings of the P.G.I.A. and the school year have been pushed back indefinitely. But how did we get here? What's certain, is that many if not all of the cases came via the northern districts of Orange Walk and Corozal. And that's just where the Commissioner of Police went this morning, leading a caravan of police and media to the proverbial pores in that famously porous border. Cherisse Halsall was along for the ride.

How Did Cops Get COVID?
And for the hundreds of officers charged with patrolling the border and intercepting jumpers, COVID-19 is a massive occupational hazard. That's because the highly contagious disease has the potential to decimate an active police force leaving the internal security of the nation in the balance. After all, 14 officers had to be placed on quarantine in Corozal when a woman constable tested positive, and today, 20 officers in that formation got swabbed. We'll wait and see what the results are. They could translate into a nightmare for the Commissioner, but it's a very real occupational risk in this very difficult kind of frontline work. The commissioner told us today he's at pains to avoid that risk:

Managing Police From the North
And to avoid that most dystopian of scenarios, policing by the military, The Commissioner has warned his officers to steer clear of the north. He's also told those who live there to avoid mingling and whenever possible, to just stay home. "Also sent out an advisory advising that while we have not put any travel ban to the North, that police officers are advised not to visit the north unless there is an extreme need to do so..."

Cops and Contraband?
Some of those northern cops are rumored to themselves engage or at least indulge in contraband goods. We asked the Commissioner about those allegations today but he said that he's yet to see the evidence. "There is all kind of rumors but until I can confirm we cannot say but I have sent the warning to police officers if they are involved then they must stop. I can tell you if it is that we get any evidence against any police officer who is involved they are going to face the same consequence like the ordinary citizen, we aren't going to take up for them."

Is Border Unit Jumping On Jumpers?
There are also allegations about a border jumping unit that's making less than its share of arrests. It's the unit settled Trinidad village, which villagers say has ceased doing night patrols. We put the question to the Commissioner, but he defended the unit. "I don't know where you get that from because most of the border jumpers who've been apprehended in the north we're apprehended by the team in Santa Cruz and it's not Trinidad. The officers just stay in Trinidad. Trinidad is not known to be a border crossing area. That is more in..."

Pedro Cops Have To Say Put
And while those cops may be busy on the traversing border backroads their counterparts on Ambergris Caye are on lockdown. This afternoon we got word that No police officer will be allowed to visit or leave the island the only exception being island officers who were on leave on the mainland, they will be allowed to return to work. It's a safety measure that the Commissioner provided an explanation for earlier today. Reporter: "Sir, we are getting word that no police officer will be allowed to enter or leave the island of San Pedro for the next 14 days barring officers that were on leave on the mainland and have to return to work. Can you comment?"

Man Found Guilty Of San Pedro Murder
He's been on remand awaiting murder for almost 2 years, but tonight 32-year-old Vildo Lorenzo Westby is back at prison awaiting a sentencing hearing. That's after he was found guilty today of the February 2017 murder of 44-year-old Jose Felix Ayuso. Viewers may remember that crime, which was a cause of great pain for the San Pedro community. Ayuso was the owner of a unisex salon on the island, and he was also a well-known AIDS activist. Westby, the man now convicted of his murder, was on the run from the island cops for almost a year, until he was caught in Mexico, and he was sent back to Belize as a wanted fugitive.

Immigration Officers Busted with Weed In Dept Truck
In the middle of all the COVID concern we've been reporting on, there's a quite remarkable story coming out of the north. Today in Orange Walk near the toll bridge, Special Branch police intercepted a government pickup, a Mahindra, allegedly smuggling over 7 pounds of weed. Three immigration staffers were Inside the Department pickup when they were stopped at a checkpoint between miles 40 and 50 on the Phillip Goldson Highway.

Two Alleged Murder Masterminds Charged
Two weeks ago we told you about the horrific murders of Windell Trapp and Samuel Hill. It happened in front of a crowded San Ignacio nightclub and left three others including police officer Danny Jimenez gravely injured. It's a crime for which two men 33-year-old John Alexander Hendy, of Santa Elena and 26-year-old Travis Tyler Navarro of Belize City have already been arrested and charged.

The Future of Travel (to Belize)
At the top of the news, we told you about the announcement from the Prime Minister that the Philip Goldson International Airport will not open on August 15th, as had been planned. That's after a sudden spike in the number of coronavirus cases in Corozal, Orange Walk, and San Pedro, which has health authorities concerned that there is possibly a community spread of the deadly and contagious virus. Although the Airport will not open in 10 days, the authorities are still preparing for the day when it will actually happen. This evening, we got a chance to speak with Mike Singh, the Chief Technology Officer from the Government's Central Information Technology Office, about the plan, which would have been implemented, had the government moved ahead with the August 15th reopening. Here's what he told Daniel Ortiz about the COVID protocol that visitors will have to abide by when that day finally comes:

Will American Airlines Strong-arm Belize?
And so now that the airport will not open - what happens with the airline, which likes to have their way, and don't like to reschedule or refund flights that have already been booked? That's what we asked the PM today:

OW Market Stays Closed
And while American Airlines will just have to wait - so will shoppers at the Orange Walk town market. That market will remain closed for the next 14 days. That's because the relatives of a confirmed case who own a stall at the market are said to have been operating as late as Saturday. Still, the market's closure is a difficult decision that affects many livelihoods and one that the town's mayor says his council does not take lightly. HE spoke to CRTV-3 today.

Senate Debates Southside State of Emergency
And, in other news, the Senate met today in Belmopan. The only issue they debated was the Southside state of emergency being extended for two months. The debate on the house on Monday was lively and revealing and it was rough in the Senate today as well. Here's the back and forth:

Why BNTU Told Students and Teachers To Not go to School
And speaking on the adjournment AT today's Senate meeting, Labour Representative Elena Smith outlined why the BNTU sent out a press release today telling teachers and students not to go to school next Monday. It was a major release and if the Ministry had any doubts, that disclaimer certainly tipped the decision in favour of not opening schools.

Investigating The Pecarry Kill
And in an update to the story we ran last night on those dead peccaries in the Toledo District, CEO in the Ministry of the Environment Percival Cho says the investigation has shown that there are no water quality issues in the area. "The team from the forestry department met and drove around with the chairman, a police officer and personnel from Belize Audubon Society.

Another Jumper
And even is Belize is going through its toughest COVID spell so far, the reports of border jumpers keep on coming in. Police say that around 7:45 last night, two specialized units in San Pedro responded to reports that someone entered the country illegally, and was on the island. They later encountered 47-year-old Julio Rodolfo Oscal Gonzalez, a naturalized Belizean construction worker of 21 Angel Coral Street.

Channel 5

15 New Cases of COVID-19; an Additional 14 Confirmed Today
The news tonight is that number of corona virus cases continues to climb setting new records.  As many as fifteen new cases of the coronavirus have been confirmed setting a [...]

No Community Spread, But Clusters and Sporadic Cases
There is no community spread as yet, but Ambergris Caye, Orange Walk and, to a lesser extent, Corozal remain areas of great concern given the contact tracing and testing taking [...]

Schools Will Not Reopen on August 10th
One of the big announcements is regards in the opening of schools. Now parents and teachers have been expressing concern over the health of their children and those of the [...]

Teachers – Keep Preparing, Get Contingency Plans Going
But even as a date for the reopening of schools has not been set, Minister of Education Patrick Faber stressed the need for teachers to continue to prepare for the [...]

PM Retracts Statement About Private Flight
We will come to the latest on the P.G.I.A., but during the course of his lengthy presentation today, the Prime Minister misspoke, saying that a flight from Texas had arrived [...]

Private Flight Landed in Belize for Fishing Tournament
While that private jet clearly did not land in Belize, there are reports of a private flight into Belize.  According to reports, the private flight carried the family of a [...]

Philip Goldson International Airport Will NOT Reopen on August 15th
The long anticipated reopening of the airport will not happen as planned. After a very stern warning to the nation about not practicing quarantine guidelines, the Prime Minister said that [...]

American Airlines Cuts Belize from Schedule
During the lengthy press conference that concluded around five-thirty, Prime Minister Dean Barrow received an update from American Airlines regarding the government’s decision not to open the P.G.I.A. on August [...]

What Measures to Be Put in Place?
So schools and the P.G.I.A. will not reopen as planned due to the COVID-19 crisis. But what measures are being put in place for containment. The Prime Minister says that [...]

Cracking Down on Public Officials Facilitation Illegal Activities Along te Border
During his press conference today, Prime Minister Dean Barrow scolded Belizeans saying that their behaviour is a direct consequence of the rise in cases. Barrow told the nation that the [...]

Teenager Critical Following a Boating Accident
A teenager is in a critical condition following a boating accident sometime this afternoon. Fifteen year-old student Kyle Carias of Caye Caulker suffered a large cut to the forehead and [...]

Commissioner Williams Advises Police Officer Not to Travel to Northern Districts
A memo has been sent to members of the Belize Police Department advising officers that they are not to travel to San Pedro, Ambergris Caye. The directive came into effect [...]

2 Police Officers Infected with COVID-19
Two police officers have tested positive for COVID-19. These police officers reportedly came in contact with a female officer who tested positive for the deadly virus earlier in the week. [...]

B.N.T.U. Preempts M.O.E.; Advises Teachers, Students Not to Attend Classes
Before the Minister of Education announced the delay of school reopening, the B.N.T.U. issued a press release to discourage teachers and students from returning to school on Monday. The B.N.T.U. [...]

B.N.T.U. President Weighs in on Homeschooling
Keeping it on education, we also asked President Elena Smith about homeschooling during this pandemic. The Ministry of Education has laid out the plans for homeschooling where parents need to [...]

ComPol Says Mexicans Did Not Participate in Fishing Tournament
Since the weekend, speculation has been rampant that a recent fishing tournament at Grand Caribe Resort at San Pedro contributed to the climb in the cases of COVID-19.  That tournament [...]

AG Warns that Increasing COVID-19 Cases Could Mean Restrictive Measures
The Prime Minister says that consultations will be held on which measures can be taken and where to contain the virus. The Attorney General Michael Peyrefitte spoke with the press [...]

AG Calls on the Public to Stop the Spread of COVID-19
In his comments to the press, the Attorney General begged the Belizean public to refrain from risky activities such as illegally crossing the border and buying contraband because these can [...]

S.O.E. Extension Goes Before the Senate
The House on Monday approved a motion to extend the State of Emergency on the Southside for two more months. That extension went before the senate today where it was [...]

P.U.P. Senators on S.O.E. Extension
At the House, Pickstock area representative Wilfred Elrington fiercely opposed the extension calling out his own government for not doing enough to help the marginalized youths.  The discussions of poverty [...]

The Reporter

Two more Corozal police officers confirmed with COVID-19; 12 quarantined
Two colleagues of the first police officer from Corozal District have tested positive for COVID-19 […]

B2B Tuesday
The Embassy of Mexico in Belize has announced the launch of a virtual initiative for commercial promotion – B2B Tuesday. This project seeks to foster bilateral economic cooperation by encouraging commercial partnerships between Belizean and Mexican businesses. The B2B Tuesday promotion initiative will use the Embassy’s social media platforms to announce Mexican companies interested in connecting with Belizean businesses and expanding into the Belizean market through Business to Business (B2B) commerce.

Fort Cairns Market Plaza to Remain Closed
The Orange Walk Town Council, on the advice of the Ministry of Health (MOH), has taken the decision to continue with the closure of the Fort Cairns Market Plaza to allow for health officials to carry out a comprehensive mapping exercise. The Reporter was told that the decision was taken after it was learned that both the wife and son of the farmer diagnosed with the virus, all vendors, had tested positive for COVID-19. Sources say that over the weekend the wife was conducting business at the market while already exhibiting symptoms of the virus. What is worrisome to health officials is that the woman was reportedly in close contact with at least two other vendors, as well as shoppers at the market.

LOVE FM

TEENAGER DIES IN BOAT ACCIDENT
Reports reaching our newsroom are that the teenager involved in the boat accident in Caye Caulker earlier this evening has passed away. 15-year-old Kyle Carias was at the back of the boat when he fell overboard and was injured in the head by the propellers.

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

Murder in Mile 8 Community on the George Price Highway
The victim has been identified as Shakeem Humes, a resident of the community who has known connections with […]

14 new cases of COVID-19 detected today; total cases now at 86
The Ministry of Health has confirmed that 14 new cases of COVID-19 was detected in […]

Three Immigration officers busted with 8 lbs of marijuana
Today, 3 Immigration officers were busted with weed inside of a Government issued vehicle. Authorities […]

Scotiabank San Pedro stays closed after employee tests positive for COVID-19
The San Pedro Town branch of Scotiabank will remain closed until Sunday, August 8, the […]

Chuc’s Service Station robbed at gunpoint
Police are investigating an armed robbery that occurred yesterday at Chuc’s Service Station located on […]

BEL: “We take all necessary precaution” re COVID-19
Belize Electricity Limited offered a brief statement this evening following up on an internal communication which […]

At least 15 new cases of COVID-19 identified today
In today’s press conference, the Prime Minister of Belize, Dean Barrow, reported that there are […]

Man escapes from San Ignacio quarantine center
Late this evening, a man reportedly escaped from the Victor Galvez quarantine center in San Ignacio. […]

BEL issues warning after employee reportedly shows COVID-19 like symptoms
Belize Electricity Limited (BEL) says it is investigating a report by an employee who is […]

Galindo brothers charged for conspiracy to commit murder
Police have arrested and charged Santa Elena residents Minor Joel Galindo, 31, and David Galindo 34, […]

Commissioner of Police delivers personal protective equipment to security forces combating border jumping
Commissioner of Police Chester Williams has returned to the “Contraband Corridor” in the northern districts […]

Slavery and the Oligarchical System – Belize
By Bill Undo: On Monday, June 22nd, it was announced that the holding company that owns the Belize Bank Ltd. was in the process of buying out the assets and liabilities of Scotia Bank (Belize) Ltd. Then one […]

PM Barrow says Ministry of Education prepared to delay reopening of schools
Less than a week from school reopening and ten days from the airport doing the […]

The Barrow Administration has had ample time to conduct redistricting exercise, says PEACE Movement
The Belize PEACE Movement has accused Prime Minister and substantive Minister of Elections and Boundaries, […]

Opposition Senator resounds call for government of Belize to speak out on Garifuna plight in Honduras
Following a request by five former foreign ministers that the Government of Belize send a […]

Prime Minister to host press conference to update nation on COVID-19 situation
The Government of Belize has informed that today at 3 p.m. the Prime Minister will […]

Senate meets today, State of Emergency to be extended
There is a special sitting of the Senate taking place today, in which senators will […]

Moderna takes in millions for experimental COVID-19 vaccine ahead of final trials
Moderna Incorporated’s experimental COVID-19 vaccine is leading the lucrative race to be first in production, […]

Belize National Teachers Union launches survey
The Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) has launched an online survey for parents to fill […]

BNTU advises teachers and students to remain OUT of class
The Belize National Teachers Union (BNTU) issued a statement today advising teachers and students to […]

Belize Electricity Limited replacing poles in Belmopan
The Belmopan City Council informs residents of Unity Boulevard and Trinity Boulevard that Belize Electricity […]

Ministry of Education launches homeschooling applications
Today, the Ministry of Education launched the home-schooling applications for parents wishing to home school […]

Tropic Air resumes Placencia flights
Tropic Air announced today that it is resuming flights to the Placencia peninsula on Monday, […]

Belize monitors 39 active cases of COVID-19
Health authorities are monitoring 39 active cases of COVID-19. Of the 39 active cases, 19 […]

PUP standard bearer for Pickstock says not time to reopen the airport
PUP standard bearer for Pickstock, Anthony Mahler issued a statement expressing concerns with the reopening […]

Blogs

Tropic Air resumes Placencia flights
Tropic Air will resume flights to the Placencia peninsula on Monday, August 10. Flights will operate three times weekly via the Riversdale Airstrip at the northern end of the peninsula. This is due to the ongoing construction at the airstrip in town.

Southwest Implementing Changes to Aircraft Cleaning
As the company returns to a standard turnaround time, cleaning procedures have been narrowed down to areas with greater risk of contamination. Those high touched areas include lavatories and tray tables. A memo sent out to flight attendants of the airlines shared with USA today sheds light on Southwest’s new cleaning procedures. As of August 1st, lavatories and tray tables will be disinfected before each take off between each flight under the new policy. However, the armrests and seat belts will not be wiped down until the planes nightly cleaning session.

Belize & CoVid-19: Updates Including International Airport Opening CANCELLED
Start with Dr. Manzanero, the testing and the science – yesterday 148 samples were processed/tested countrywide – a new record. 15 new cases were diagnosed yesterday, August 4th, 7 in Orange Walk, 7 in Corozal and 1 in San Pedro (symptomatic but not related to case 57 over the weekend. Believed to be linked to a church gathering) Extensive contract tracing – includes family reunions, large parties – making things more complicated. Preliminary results = 14 new cases in San Pedro today. So there would be 16 active cases in San Pedro in all. Tracing can go back as far as the beginning of July – including weddings, fishing tournament and other “Super Spreader Events”

Belize Postpones the Reopening of its International Airport
The Government of Belize has postponed the planned reopening of the international airport from August 15 to a later date, due to a local spike of COVID-19 cases in country. A press conference held today on August 05, 2020 announced that due to a spike in the number of COVID-19 cases in three districts, there will be a delay in the reopening of the Philip Goldson International Airport (PGIA). Prime Minister Rt. Dean Barrow said that although the airport will not reopen, the weekly repatriation flights for Belizean nationals abroad will continue, including the 14-day mandatory quarantine upon arrival.

Land Laws in Belize – Everything You Need to Know
Land is a great way to build equity, and if you are thinking of owning a piece in Belize, you are heading in the right direction. Now, as much as it is a viable way to build wealth, you must apply due diligence to avoid losing a huge chunk of your savings. Do some research before making your final decision and, if possible, ask your questions to the sales team at Salt Life Belize because they know better. Belize has numerous options for lifestyle. Do you want a waterfront life, jungle, or island living? Do you want to buy land specifically for farming? The choice is all yours.

What Are The Negatives About Living In Belize?
Belize is a stunningly beautiful country with a laid-back, affordable lifestyle and the opportunity to indulge in nature. For many people, it’s an ideal retirement community. Still, it is not for everyone. Here are some reasons you may want to retire somewhere else. If theater, museums, fine restaurants and live performances are your hobbies, you probably won’t enjoy Belize. If you like to shop for trendy fashions, you definitely won’t enjoy it. There are no concert arenas, orchestras or theater groups in Belize. You won’t find cities with well-developed downtown shopping areas. Most of the shopping you’ll do here is for necessities like clothes and food, and most of your clothes will consist of shorts and flip-flops.

Why Do Americans Enjoy Living In Belize?
The number of Americans moving to Belize is steadily increasing. The country has become a popular choice for those looking to purchase property overseas or enjoy a quiet, peaceful retired life. Here are the top reasons why Americans are drawn to this Caribbean country. 1. ENGLISH IS WIDELY SPOKEN. One of the biggest adjustments when moving overseas is learning a new language. Being a former British colony, English is widely spoken in Belize. You can go about your day, ask directions, and converse with the locals in English. Even better, all official documents, street signs, and menus are in English. You don’t need a translator or a language app on your phone. This allows you to hit the ground running.

International Sourcesizz

A coral sex milestone: Lab-grown and replanted corals to spawn in the Florida Keys
Not long after the August full moon, Florida’s reefs are the scene of an annual show of sexual reproduction called the coral spawn, with coral colonies releasing masses of tiny white, pink and orange spheres into the ocean. This year, for the first time, corals raised by scientists in a lab and transplanted to the natural reefs are primed to join the spawn — a promising milestone for ongoing efforts to restore the ravaged reef systems off South Florida. “This is really amazing because we had no idea what to expect when we planted these corals five years ago,” said Hanna Koch, Mote Marine Laboratory’s coral reproduction scientist, which is using a technique called microfragmentation-fusion to raise the corals on land and plant them on local reefs.

The S911 Enforcer
Saw on Channel 7 News a presentation of the geo-fence bracelet they will be using for returning citizens and residents - the S911 Enforcer. The S911 Enforcer is a wearable device used for monitoring the safety and well-being of your lone workers. It's compact and comfortable, and has the most advanced technology available in a wearable device.

Videos

  • Special Sitting of The Senate | National Assembly of Belize, 2hrmin. View a live stream of today's Special Sitting of the Senate

  • Mask Wear and Care, 1min. Rotary Club of Belize. August is "Mask Up month" and in support of this effort the Rotary Club of Belize is giving away 20K masks via Rotary Clubs across the country along with the Rotaract Club of Belize City, Rotaract Corozal, Rotaract Dangriga, Belize Diabetes Association, Help Age Belize, Belize Mental Health Association, Mercy Clinic, and the Belize Cancer Society.

  • Mask Wear and Care in Spanish, 1min. Rotary Club of Belize

  • Ocean Academy Back to School, 5sec. Dear Parents and Students of Ocean Academy, On behalf of the Ocean Academy faculty and staff, we are excited to begin teaching and learning for the 2020-2021 school year! We want you to know that the health and safety of our students, teachers, families, and community is of utmost importance. We also want you to know that we are designing curriculum, strategies, and schedules to ensure deep and meaningful learning so that OA students continue to grow and thrive. As we have planned all along, we are designing a school year that will allow us to be flexible between fully online learning, and blended learning (online learning and campus learning). Given the recent increase in COVID cases, especially in San Pedro, we will begin the year either fully online or four days per week online with one day (optional) on campus.

  • Virtual News Conference, Update on Covid-19 Situation, 2hr20min.

  • Placencia Belize, 5.5min. Riding a bike into Placencia Village.

  • University of Belize - Faculty of Arts and Education Orientation, 6.5min.

  • Lady Erica early years part 3, 9min. Boxing Day on the river in Belize City and days on St. Georges Caye

  • Belize - San Pedro, 4min. Vacation Belize San Pedro July 2019

  • Family Time in Belize, 22min. A family looks to spend more quality time together on Caye Caulker, Belize.

  • Camping Turneffe Atoll, Belize, 3.5min. We love taking every opportunity we can to enjoy the sea and explore our home country, Belize. It was very tough for us while we were on lockdown not being able to go out on the boat. We decided to take a quick trip out the Cayes in the Turneffe Atolls before Belize's borders open.

  • Jungle Warfare Instructor Course 2016 Belize, 7min. Guacamallo Camp, Jungle Survival
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